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President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize?
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norcalgolfer



Joined: 06 Jul 2009
Posts: 38
Location: Ranch Cordova, CA

PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 5:26 pm    Post subject: President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize? Reply with quote

Wow. So President Obama is nominated for the Nobel Prize a mere 2 weeks into his presidency, and today they announce that he has been awarded it.

For what exactly?

For failing to pass a national health care plan? How about spending so much money that our deficit is now triple the previous record set last year ($459 billion), at $1.4 trillion? Maybe for speaking only once in 70 days to his top commander in Afghanistan while more and more American soldiers die there? Could it be for the 9.8% unemployment level?

I've got it, it was for holding a Beer Summit!!

I didn't have much respect for the Nobel committee after they gave the prize to Al Gore, and now after this, it means absolutely nothing to me. The Nobel Peace Prize has become a purely political award with little or no real meaning other than the political agenda behind it.

P.S. I am pleased to see that many if not most Obama supporters are similarly skeptical of this award, especially considering more American soldiers are dying daily in Afghanistan this year than last, added on top of the fact that he hasn't actually accomplished anything.
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KarenS



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 871
Location: Florida

PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Obama won because he's not George W Bush. It's that simple. The Committee and the rest of the world are trying to tell us they are happy that we changed course in America. The Taliban is unhappy that he won as well. So what does that say for those who don't support the President? Maybe the feeling that only a Republican is entitled to be President??? Some feel that way. Remember how Clinton was treated by a certain segment of the population? He was vilified for being a good-ole boy though he was a Rhodes Scholar. Those with a strange sense of entitlement feel that only white Republican men should be allowed to govern.

We should be happy that an American won. And even though the birthers don't believe that Obama is truly American--he is, really, truly.

I think the award will also give Obama a nudge to continue the peace process and multilateralism. This will help his standing in the international community. So actually it's a win-win for America.

It may not mean much to you that he won but in the international community his word will mean more. It will give him more clout. So that's good for us.

We could use it. After eight long years of Bush, Obama's problems were inherited so he's working on them. Give him time. He's only been in office for less than a year. He's not perfect so he's still working on a long to-do list.

As to Afghanistan let's hope we leave soon. Can't get out of the Middle East fast enough and leave that part of the world to those that live there. Let them deal with their problems.

The national health care plan is in the works so we will have to see what happens there, spending money for the economic recovery was bi-partisan and began under W. The unemployment level needs to be improved but we have to address increasing wages for the working class. Once people have more money, they will spend more. The middle class spends when it has discretionary income. The middle class is the engine of the economy.
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Karaa



Joined: 17 Apr 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 4:09 am    Post subject: Re: President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize? Reply with quote

norcalgolfer wrote:
Wow. So President Obama is nominated for the Nobel Prize a mere 2 weeks into his presidency, and today they announce that he has been awarded it.

For what exactly?


"[f]or his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."

The Nobel Peace Prize is dedicated to "the person who shall have done

(A) the most or the best work for fraternity between nations,
(B) for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for
(C) the holding and promotion of peace congresses".

According to the press release, the Norwegian Nobel Committee "has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 is to be awarded to President Barack Obama for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples (A). The Committee has attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons (B).

"Obama has as President created a new climate in international politics. Multilateral diplomacy has regained a central position, with emphasis on the role that the United Nations and other international institutions can play. Dialogue and negotiations are preferred as instruments for resolving even the most difficult international conflicts (A). The vision of a world free from nuclear arms has powerfully stimulated disarmament and arms control negotiations (B). Thanks to Obama's initiative, the USA is now playing a more constructive role in meeting the great climatic challenges the world is confronting. Democracy and human rights are to be strengthened.

"Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future. His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population (A).

"For 108 years, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has sought to stimulate precisely that international policy and those attitudes for which Obama is now the world's leading spokesman. The Committee endorses Obama's appeal that 'Now is the time for all of us to take our share of responsibility for a global response to global challenges.'"
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 2511

PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no quarrel with his getting the prize, but I find it puzzling he did. A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.
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Karaa



Joined: 17 Apr 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dick wrote:
I have no quarrel with his getting the prize, but I find it puzzling he did. A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.


Clearly, the Norwegian Noble Committee believes President Obama has already done something very important to earn the prize, namely given the world hope: "Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future."

As to why now and not later, explains Thorbjörn Jagland, chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee: "Some people say — and I understand it — 'Isn't it premature? Too early?' Well, I'd say then that it could be too late to respond three years from now. It is now that we have the opportunity to respond — all of us."

"For 108 years, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has sought to stimulate precisely that international policy and those attitudes for which Obama is now the world's leading spokesman. The Committee endorses Obama's appeal that 'Now is the time for all of us to take our share of responsibility for a global response to global challenges.'"

That is the message the Norwegian Nobel Committee wants to send out using President Obama as a "vessel", if you like.
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4225
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 12:29 pm    Post subject: Re: President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize? Reply with quote

norcalgolfer wrote:
I've got it, it was for holding a Beer Summit!

As great an idea as that was, that probably wasn't the reason. But then, who knows? Maybe one of the participants ordered an international beer that helped their PR. Laughing

dick wrote:
A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.

Good way of putting it. Most of our past and present leaders had and still have high hopes for great and wonderful things, peace among them. Wanting and accomplishing are two different things. I thought it was a bit too early in his presidency for this honor. Although he's helped with America's reputation in the world, we still have a long road ahead. Not knowing who the other candidates were for this award, it's hard to do comparisons, though.
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Kristie(J)



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 1138
Location: Southwestern Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dick wrote:
I have no quarrel with his getting the prize, but I find it puzzling he did. A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.


I agree. I was startled too when I heard he won. I've no quarrel either but can't see exactly what he's accomplished to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
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maryskl



Joined: 25 Apr 2009
Posts: 356
Location: Alabama

PostPosted: Wed Oct 28, 2009 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kristie(J) wrote:
dick wrote:
I have no quarrel with his getting the prize, but I find it puzzling he did. A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.


I agree. I was startled too when I heard he won. I've no quarrel either but can't see exactly what he's accomplished to win the Nobel Peace Prize.


I have two comments concerning President Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize. First, It is/was not a requirement that he be president to win. So the 2 weeks between his inauguration and being nominated for the prize are not really relevant. He traveled on diplomacy missions before he was elected and the stand he took during the election was one of peace. Second, a number of winners won without accomplishing their goals. Nelson Mandela won a full 10 years before Apartheid was ended in South Africa. Jimmy Carter tried for peace in the Middle East, but unfortunately that goal is still elusive. I have a number of relatives who either live overseas or have recently returned from living overseas. From the perspective of the rest of the world, his election gave them the hope of peace. I was in Jamaica last summer and almost everyone I talked to wanted Obama to win because they thought he would bring peace. My daughter also spent last summer in Ireland. People would come up to her and say, "Yes We Can!" As isolated as we are from the rest of the world, we tend to forget that what we do has an enormous impact on other nations. An Irish friend put it rather well: "When America gets a cold, the British get the flu and Ireland is decimated by the plague." There may have been others who deserved some recognition, but Obama is the biggest player on the world stage and the rest of the world is his audience.
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 2511

PostPosted: Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Nobel committee can, of course, do as it pleases. It can, as it did, award a prize prior to the completion of what the prize is awarded for, but when they do so, they play havoc with the meanings of words, for arousing hope simply isn't the same, in any way, shape, or form, as establishing peace or promoting peace.
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JaneO



Joined: 17 Feb 2008
Posts: 798

PostPosted: Fri Oct 30, 2009 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I have no quarrel with his getting the prize, but I find it puzzling he did. A prize, after all, is usually awarded for what one has done, not for what one hopes he will do. It's somewhat like declaring a runner the winner as soon as the starting gun has fired.

Precisely, dick.
I have to say, when I first heard the news, I laughed. I thought it was a joke, and it seems there are a great many people all across the political spectrum who feel the same way.
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AM78



Joined: 08 Nov 2009
Posts: 202
Location: United States

PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2009 12:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was curious about the other nominees. Perhaps Obama was more deserving? So I did some research. A chinese dissident, a female Afghan doctor, and a colombian politician who worked to release 16 hostages lost to The President. I didn't know people are awarded prizes because they can fill stadiums with people like a rock star. I would have been so much more impressed by Obama had he declined the prize. The recipient also gets 1.4 million dollars. Obama said he would give it to charity. I agree the Nobel prize is a joke. Having said this, I was an Obama supporter, and still am. I was proud of The United States when he won.
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Cora



Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 1129
Location: Bremen, Germany

PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my view, there are two types of Nobel Peace Prize winners. The first type are the winners that absolutely no one can argue with, charitable organisations or individuals, dissidents in countries widely viewed as undemocratic, etc... Everyone except perhaps the governments of said undemocratic countries agrees that these winners are absolutely worthy. They are also utterly uncontroversial.

The second type of Nobel Peace Price winners are the political winners.* These are usually more high-profile figures, who are well known even before they win the prize and who win for some political process or project whose outcome is still undecided at the time the prize is awarded. Often the prize is awarded to these winners to support whatever political process or project they have started. These winners are often highly controversial. What is more, since the prize is awarded for something that is still in progress, it sometimes turns out in retrospect that the winner was not so worthy after all (Yassir Arafat, anyone?). Barack Obama is the second kind of winner. I suspect he was awarded the prize in support of his policies, even though how they will turn out is anybody's guess.

I also find it curious that Americans tend to complain whenever someone who is not American wins the Nobel Prize for Literature (the annual outcry of "I have never heard of this writer and he/she doesn't even write in English, therefore he/she can't possibly be worthy. And anyway, Philip Roth should have won."), but they also tend to complain whenever an American wins the Nobel Peace Prize. There were complaints about Obama, there were complaints about Al Gore (well, the Gore win was a definite snub against Bush), there were complaints about Jimmy Carter (a winner with whom no one outside the US had any issues), there probably were complaints about the anti-landmine campaign woman as well and an anti-landmine campaigner is about as uncontroversial as you can get.

*Not that dissidents aren't political winners, too. A Nobel Peace Prize win for a dissident is a message to whatever regime he or she opposes and it also protects the dissident, because it makes it much more difficult for the regime to disappear him or her. Because while very few people tend to notice the disappearance of a dissident no one has ever heard of, the world does tend to notice when a Nobel Peace Prize winner disappears.
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AM78



Joined: 08 Nov 2009
Posts: 202
Location: United States

PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 1:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cora wrote:
In my view, there are two types of Nobel Peace Prize winners. The first type are the winners that absolutely no one can argue with, charitable organisations or individuals, dissidents in countries widely viewed as undemocratic, etc... Everyone except perhaps the governments of said undemocratic countries agrees that these winners are absolutely worthy. They are also utterly uncontroversial.

The second type of Nobel Peace Price winners are the political winners.* These are usually more high-profile figures, who are well known even before they win the prize and who win for some political process or project whose outcome is still undecided at the time the prize is awarded. Often the prize is awarded to these winners to support whatever political process or project they have started. These winners are often highly controversial. What is more, since the prize is awarded for something that is still in progress, it sometimes turns out in retrospect that the winner was not so worthy after all (Yassir Arafat, anyone?). Barack Obama is the second kind of winner. I suspect he was awarded the prize in support of his policies, even though how they will turn out is anybody's guess.

I also find it curious that Americans tend to complain whenever someone who is not American wins the Nobel Prize for Literature (the annual outcry of "I have never heard of this writer and he/she doesn't even write in English, therefore he/she can't possibly be worthy. And anyway, Philip Roth should have won.")

I agree.
A comment about Americans complaining when someone whose not American wins the Nobel Prize for Literature. Speaking as an American, the work of French and Russian writers fascinates me more than American writers. I think political correctness has in many ways damaged American Literature.
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JaneO



Joined: 17 Feb 2008
Posts: 798

PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think many Americans are particularly distressed that Philip Roth has not won a Nobel prize. After all, neither did Proust or Joyce. I think many people were offended by last year's comment from Mr. Engdahl, who is a permanent member of the Nobel committee:
Quote:
There is powerful literature in all big cultures, but you can't get away from the fact that Europe still is the centre of the literary world ... not the United States. The US is too isolated, too insular. They don't translate enough and don't really participate in the big dialogue of literature ...That ignorance is restraining.
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 2511

PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think there is a considerable difference between stating that Obama's winning the Nobel peace prize wasn't, given the circumstances, very rational--and therefore startling--and complaining about it. In fact, it was reported, if I recall correctly, that he was surprised. I doubt, too, that many Americans really pay any attention to who wins the Nobel prize for literature, even when an American wins it. A bit cynically, I've often wondered whether the hoopla surrounding the Nobels doesn't stem as much from the large amounts of cash accompanying them as to the accuracy of the judgments.
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